There’s no shame in being a life-long Hanson fan by Natalie Hardwicke

This is a part of the Other Folk project.

It is Monday morning at work. I’ve just logged in and open Outlook. No new emails. Sigh. I click to open the folder of word docs I’ve been editing and re-wording for the past six weeks. They are all about Procurement and Finance policy – riveting topics first thing on a Monday.

To pass the time and cancel out the co-workers around me, I turn on my iPod and set it to shuffle. It isn’t long before a tune comes on that I almost don’t recognise, but its beat causes me to bounce in my desk chair ever-so slightly.

I look down and this is my view

The song is ‘Make It Out Alive’ by non-other than Hanson. A welcomed trip down memory lane greets me as the song plays out in my ears. It’s giving me words of wisdom to get me through the day.

I’ve liked Hanson since they first emerged on the scene in 1995. People used to say I looked like Zac –mainly because we both had blonde hair and I was a bit of a tom-boy. At the time, however, I took this as a compliment because Zac was my favourite.

My sisters also liked Hanson, but they were all on the Taylor bandwagon just like every other screaming fangirl of the time, sort of like how people have a favourite 1D band member, or a favourite Jonas brother. I’m too old now to be in the know for who’s-who in those bands. My in-the-know era was Hanson, Backstreet Boys and N*Sync (everyone knew the favs were Taylor, Brian and JT respectively. It was NOT Nick Carter, okay! It wasn’t).

At one point in my life, all the walls in my bedroom were covered in Hanson photos – clippings I had scoured from TV Hits or the celebrity magazines my mum bought every week. I cringe now at thinking how much of my pocket money was spent on blu-tac to pin those pictures up.

My love of Hanson slowly waned as I grew older, but I always revisited them in my high school years. Occasionally I would select their songs from the folder of CDs I kept in my bedroom draw, or listen to the mix tape I had made for my Walkman by recording songs off my sister’s CD player (that’s right kids, back in my day you had to physically work for your illegal “downloads”).

By my late teens, each Hanson boy had gotten married and had bred like rabbits. Seriously, they’ve got like 10 kids between them. (Side note – has anyone noticed that their wives look like each other? Google it.) Eight-year-old me was disappointed that I hadn’t grown up to marry Zac. I was hurt Zac, let’s put it that way. You let me down.

Then one evening in early 2012 – a resurgence of my now somewhat idle love affair with the band. I get a phone call from my sister saying she heard whispers of a Hanson tour down under. We jumped online and found tickets for a show in Adelaide in September that year. We lived in Canberra so myself, my sisters, and two of our friends decided we’d make a weekend of it. To this day, the only time I have ever visited Adelaide was for the Hanson concert. #NoRegrets.

To say we were keen for the concert was an understatement. We made shirts that had Hanson-related content on the front and back. I was the designer of said shirt. You can clearly see my high level Photoshop skills on the front, and my poetic prose on the back.


(In my haste and excitement to make the shirt, I may have forgotten the ‘S’ on hop…)

(In my haste and excitement to make the shirt, I may have forgotten the ‘S’ on hop…)



(You’re supposed to sing it to the tune of ‘Weird’)

(You’re supposed to sing it to the tune of ‘Weird’)

The concert was everything we’d expected and more. We were in the mosh-pit section (the venue only fit about 2000 people, so we were pretty close to the action).

I took this photo of Taylor…

(Mmm padded crotch)

(Mmm padded crotch)

… my sister touched Zac’s drumstick (his actual drumstick, not the other kind that can be taken as a metaphor relating to the previous crotch-al photo)…

And I realised that Isaac had grown up to be the most attractive Hanson – say what!?

(Mmm suave)

(Mmm suave)

As we left the concert I couldn’t help but reflect on how Hanson was really the soundtrack to my life. They taught me that making up words like ‘MMM Bop’ is okay (jiggity ja ja!) and that having your own brand of beer is true #LifeGoals and #SiblingGoals.

(Seriously, they made a beer and called it Mmm Hops)

(Seriously, they made a beer and called it Mmm Hops)

They taught me about Tulsa, Tokyo and the Middle of Nowhere (I’ve visited the first two, still looking for that third destination #TravelGoals), and they taught me that your last name can be made into a cool logo.


Most of all, Hanson taught me that all you need in life is family, music, and love. That’s really what they’re all about and, coincidentally, these are the things that make the world go round (and round and round).

I will forever listen to Hanson. Their music is timeless, their looks are on-fleek, and because boy bands of today are not made how they used to be. If the term ‘Belieber’ is used to reflect fandom for JB, then I’m going to go with ‘Hansonite’ for my love of those three American boys. #Hansonite #ForLife


Natalie is a full-time procrastinator, self-proclaimed coffee addict, and an eternal nerd who occasionally writes about things of sorts.

Read the last week’s Other Folk post: Kali Myers is a Rare Mythical Creature: An Arts Student Who Loves Working Out


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